FCBD 2008 report…

i know, it’s strange for me to talk about comics when it’s not Wednesday. and FCBD was two days ago now, making any “immediacy” of this post non-existent.

but i’ve had a busy weekend and don’t want to wait until Wednesday to post this. so if you don’t like it, suck it up.

so, this past Saturday, May 3, was Free Comic Book Day 2008. one of the most-anticipated days of the year in some circles, it’s the day when the comics industry “gives back” to the fans, giving out free comic books and toys.

you know, the first hit is free, right?

admittedly, for many comic shop patrons, the free books this one day of the year is far from the first hit.

so, i started my FCBD at Captain’s Comics in West Ashley. i’m glad i arrived early, because by 10:30 the line stretched from the store door down to the end of the strip mall. all ages were represented in line, from very young children (escorted by no less enthusiastic parents), to teens, to thirty-somethings, to late middle-age.

Mike and the guys had a great setup, with guest artists Jeremy Dale and Vernon Washington doing sketches at the front of the store (right by the door), and tables with this year’s free books running down the right-hand aisle. there were also pretty good sales in effect – good enough that i was able to afford a very nice example of Doctor Strange #179.

though i didn’t stay for long (too long in the store can be hazardous to my wallet), they seemed to be doing a very good business. before leaving, though, i did get a sketch from Jeremy Dale.

Jeremy is an exceptionally talented artist (make sure to check out his website), and is really going places in the industry. though i’m no longer a big G.I. Joe fan, he is (among other things) the illustrator of the G.I. Joe 25th Anniversary comics (written by the great Larry Hama) for Hasbro. so i had him do a sketch of my favourite G.I. Joe character, Shipwreck.

leaving Captain’s Comics but not yet content with my FCBDing, i decided to check out the area’s newest local comic book store – Soundwave (warning: it’s a MySpace site, so there is the requisite auto-play music).

at first glance, Soundwave looks like your generic used music store – but just spending a couple minutes talking to the proprietor Greg Woodard about his plans for the store (and history in the hobby) makes you realize that he’s a real comics fan. Greg’s brother Eric owns Scratch’N’Spin in Columbia, which explains the music side of the business. but the Columbia store is right down the street from an established comic shop, so there was no way to do comics there.

Soundwave’s not been open for long, so they don’t have any real back issue selection, but they do have enthusiasm. their location on North Main in Summerville also makes them very convenient to comic fans in Goose Creek and Moncks Corner. Greg also has plans to carry comics from smaller publishers who aren’t distributed by Diamond, which makes his shop a prospective destination for anyone interested in the indie/underground comics scene.

there wasn’t a huge crowd at Soundwave on Saturday, which is no surprise given its newness to the area. but there was a steady stream of customers, so hopefully the store will flourish. if you’re in the area, you ought to roll by and check it out.

promo comics i picked up:

Hellboy – FCBD 2008 (Dark Horse)
Broken Trinity Prelude (Top Cow)
Drafted – FCBD Edition (DDP)
Maximum Ride: The Manga – FCBD Preview (Yen Press)
Walt Disney’s Gyro Gearloose – FCBD (Gemstone)
Gekiga! Drawn & Quarterly FCBD Sampler (Drawn & Quarterly)

i’m looking forward to next year, and hope y’all will check it out as well.

quote of the day:

“Tell all the starlets I’ll be back to sign autographs!” – Shipwreck

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2 Responses to “FCBD 2008 report…”

  1. jaz Says:

    I stopped by Soundwave as well. The owner really did seem very nice. It will be interesting to see how the store grows over time.

  2. Updraft Says:

    Somehow i missed the point. Probably lost in translation 🙂 Anyway … nice blog to visit.

    cheers, Updraft.

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